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THE MEMORIAL TOURNAMENT MEDIA DAY


May 19, 2015


Hideki Matsuyama


DAN SULLIVAN:テつ Good morning everybody, thanks for coming in.テつ I'm Dan Sullivan, Executive Director of The Memorial Tournament.テつ Thank you for coming out for our Media Day, which is the 40th Memorial Tournament Media Day.テつ We're really excited to be able to kick it off with a bang here as we get ready in two weeks' time.
With our winner of last year, Hideki Matsuyama, we thought we'd have a special day, where not only we host all the media, but we'd invite our friends within the Japanese‑American community.テつ So earlier from this press conference we had a breakfast upstairs.テつ And Hideki joined about 90 folks from around Columbus who are part of the Japanese‑American community.テつ It was a great celebration of cultures coming together.
The City of Dublin was instrumental in helping us get it together as well as JASCO, the Japanese‑American Society of Columbus, and we couldn't thank them enough for being able to do that.
So we kicked it off in a great style just an hour or two ago.テつ In recognition of that, I want to make sure if we have any City of Dublin representatives, they may have gone back to work.テつ But how about the Japanese Consulate, Dr.テつ Katayama?テつ Mr. Hidaka, who is a member here at Muirfield, he was instrumental in helping us put the morning together.テつ Thank you very much.
As we get together to talk about this year's Memorial, I want to spend a few minutes on what we're anticipating for this year.テつ We put a press release together this morning announcing players of Phil Mickelson, Jason Day, Rickie Fowler and last year's FedEx Cup champion, Billy Horschel, is committing to the tournament.
And as we've gone along the last couple of weeks, you've seen the successive group of names that we've announced.テつ Couldn't be happier with the field this year.テつ We probably have a few more to go before now and tournament week, but extremely pleased with the way the field is shaping up.テつ Of course we're honored this morning to have Hideki here with us.
With respect to the nongolf activities, I want to make sure we're paying attention to what we're doing in the community.テつ A couple of weeks ago, we had The Legends Luncheon, where Nick Faldo and Jack Nicklaus came into town and we raised a million dollars for Nationwide Children's Hospital.テつ This coming Friday we'll have a benefit concert down at the LC Pavilion, where we'll have 2000 people come and celebrate the fact that The Memorial is here, and have a chance to be a part of the community in a different way.テつ Again, raising money for Nationwide Children's Hospital.
Next Thursday we have our first annual four mile run and David Badner is in the crowd today, his team is working with our group to put on the run.テつ We anticipate having 3000 people out here for the day, and it's another opportunity for us to just be connected with the community in a different way.テつ It's all about golf if for four days, Thursday through Sunday, but it's about being part of the community throughout the year, and it's our chance to raise awareness and raise funds for Nationwide Children's hospital.テつ We could not be more happy with how we're progressing for this year's tournament.
The highlights during tournament week, we always focus on Wednesday, that's our Pro Am in the morning, Hideki will be playing in the Pro Am, as well as our Junior Golf Day, our Military Appreciation Day, and then our honorary ceremony at 3 p.m.
In the media, obviously you know we've spent a lot of time focusing on that day, we hope to bring you enough content and things of interest to talk through, not only on Wednesday, but through the rest of the week.
So when it comes to tournament play we'll have 120 of the top players in the world competing, with Hideki leading the way as our defending winner. テつHe's one of the bright young stars on the PGA Tour.テつ He won here last year entering The Memorial for the first time.テつ He had played here before during The Presidents Cup, but it was the first time he played within The Memorial Tournament.テつ And he won the tournament, and that had not been accomplished since Roger Maltby did the first year playing for the first time.
He's a tremendous talent.テつ He has seven top‑10s this year, second at the Waste Management Phoenix Open, fifth at the Masters, currently 14th in the world, 9th in the FedExCup points, and he is one of the stars of the PGA Tour, stars of golf from around the world.テつ He joins all those names that have surrounded him like Jordan Spieth and Rory McIlroy.テつ And we're extremely excited and honored that he's here today.
I'm going to have Tom Sprouse come up and lead us through the rest of the media conference.テつ And thank you all for being here today, appreciate it.
TOM SPROUSE:テつ Thanks, Dan.テつ Again, thank you all for being here with us today on this beautiful day.テつ For anyone that was here on Media Day last year, I think you'll agree that this is a much better weather day than it was last year.テつ And Hideki, we have you to thank for that, I believe, being in town.
Hideki, can you start us off by talking about being back here at Muirfield Village golf club, and what the last year's win here at Memorial has meant to your career.
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA:テつ I'm very pleased to be here today, and especially in two weeks time to be defending champion Of The Memorial Tournament.テつ It's quite an honor.テつ I'll do my best to hopefully be the two time defending champion.
TOM SPROUSE:テつ Now that you have a Presidents Cup appearance and The Memorial Tournament win under your belt here at Muirfield Village Golf Club, how do you think those experiences will help you defend your title here in a couple of weeks?
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA:テつ It has helped, the experiences in the past.テつ To be defending champion, hopefully the gallery also will continue to cheer me on.テつ I'm looking forward to that.テつ And that might be added pressure to myself to perform well, but I'm going to do my best.
TOM SPROUSE:テつ Will your mindset change coming into your first PGA Tour event as the defending winner?
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA:テつ Being the defending champion this is a new experience for me.テつ And I'm looking forward to.テつ But at the same time I'm already feeling nervous about it.テつ Thankfully I have two weeks to go back and practice as hard as I can to hopefully be a worthy defending champion.
TOM SPROUSE:テつ How important was your win to your fans and the support of golf back in Japan?
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA:テつ I remember as a youngster watching Shigeki Maruyama, and the inspiration that he was to me to want to follow in his footsteps and hopefully my win last year will encourage and hopefully inspire some of the young golfers in Japan to do the same.
TOM SPROUSE:テつ I'd like to open up questions for Hideki from the media.

Q.テつ What about Muirfield Village fit your eye, the course, itself?テつ What really kind of jazzed you?
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA:テつ I don't know how it fits my eye, but I do know that the fairways are a little wider than some of the tournaments we play.テつ And Muirfield Village is a great second shot golf course, which is my strength.テつ And maybe those are the two reasons that I've done well here.

Q.テつ You have seven top‑10s this season, but wondering if you are at all surprised that you haven't won again since winning last year?
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA:テつ You're right, I haven't won, and it's not that it's surprising, it's been more frustrating because I've come up a stroke short three times this season and I realize that the work I still have left to do in order to get over that hump and to be a winner again, it's not easy to be a winner.テつ I now know I need to work harder.

Q.テつ In the year since you've won, have you thought more about what it means to win Jack Nicklaus' tournament on his course?
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA:テつ To answer your question, it's meant a lot.テつ This is Mr. Nicklaus' golf course, and his tournament.テつ What a thrill it was to win.テつ That win really helped myself confidence this past year.
However, recently in coming up short a couple of times that confidence has wavered a little bit, and now all I can do is keep grinding and keep doing the things that I know that I have to do in order to play better.テつ And hopefully we can do that in two weeks' time.

Q.テつ The more you become a household name on the PGA Tour, do you feel it will be important for you to connect to American golf fans?テつ Will you take on the task of trying to learn English?テつ I'm not sure you know any English yet.テつ Is that going to be important to you as you move forward and we all kind of embrace your talent, being so prominent here in the States?
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA:テつ You're exactly right, and I do need to learn English.テつ Hopefully some day I won't have to have Bob up here helping me out.テつ And I'm doing my best to try to learn English.テつ I realize the importance of it.テつ And I'm doing my best.

Q.テつ You spoke to the importance of inspiring other Japanese golfers.テつ And I'm wondering how has winning The Memorial impacted your life, especially, back in Japan?
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA:テつ You know, it's hard to actually put a finger on how it's impacted my life.テつ Winning here on this golf course, I mean it's the ultimate.テつ And it's helped my confidence immensely.
How other people look at me, especially in Japan, I can't say how they look at me, but it probably is different now than it was before winning.テつ And so I owe a lot to this tournament.テつ And it's been quite a year.

Q.テつ I was just wondering, you're still very young in your career, Hideki, I'm wondering what has been the most fun part of being a professional golfer for you?
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA:テつ Getting to play golf every day (laughter).

Q.テつ How would you rank Muirfield Village Golf Club with all the courses you've now played on Tour?
HIDEKI MATSUYAMA:テつ Of course I'm biased.テつ I won here, so it's one of my very favorite courses.テつ But, no, it's right up there with all the best.
TOM SPROUSE:テつ At this time I would like to invite anyone that is interested in any one‑on‑one interviews to come on up.
Again, thank you all for being here.テつ If you are participating in the golf outing, or would like to join us for lunch, lunch is available over in the Mixed Grill.テつ Please head that way if you're not coming up for one‑on‑ones.テつ And again, thank you all for being here.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports




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